Decision-making processes, including the ones related to ill-structured problems, are of considerable significance in the area of construction projects. Computer-aided inference under such conditions requires the employment of specific methods and tools (non-algorithmic ones), the best recognized and successfully used in practice represented by expert systems. The knowledge indispensable for such systems to perform inference is most frequently acquired directly from experts (through a dialogue: a domain expert - a knowledge engineer) and from various source documents. Little is known, however, about the possibility of automating knowledge acquisition in this area and as a result, in practice it is scarcely ever used. lt has to be noted that in numerous areas of management more and more attention is paid to the issue of acquiring knowledge from available data. What is known and successfully employed in the practice of aiding the decision-making is the different methods and tools. The paper attempts to select methods for knowledge discovery in data and presents possible ways of representing the acquired knowledge as well as sample tools (including programming ones), allowing for the use of this knowledge in the area under consideration.
Complex structural engineering projects that involve information-gathering and decision-makingprocesses need to be approached with appropriate systems and tools. As transactional databasesare found to be insufficient for this purpose, engineers are adopting multidimensional informationsystems that have been successfully used in other areas of management, especially business.